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S9G Next Generation Reactor

The Navy now is well into designing the New Attack Submarine -- a technologically robust ship that provides the best balance between cost and capability. This new submarine will cost about the same as a new improved LOS ANGELES Class ship while retaining SEAWOLF quieting -- an essential military feature in a submarine. The ship will achieve the lowest cost possible commensurate with required military capability. For example, reduced speed allows lower acquisition and life cycle costs through simplification, producibility improvements, and new technology (e.g.,fewer components, enhanced modular construction, new electric plant design, and life-of-the-ship reactor core).

The S9G Next Generation Reactor and associated components which will have increased energy density. The core that is under development for the New Attack Submarine is expected to last the life of the ship. Eliminating the need for a refueling will reduce life cycle costs, cut down the radiation exposure of shipyard workers, and lessen the amount of radioactive waste generated. This is possible because of many developments such as use of advanced computers to perform three-dimensional nuclear, thermal, and structural calculations; further exploitation of the modified fuel process; and better understanding of various reactor technologies which permits more highly optimized designs. Performance improvements are gained through advances in such areas as thermal-hydraulics and structural mechanics, and by optimizing reactor-to-systems interfaces.

The new reactor which will have increased energy density, and new plant components, such as the new concept steam generator, with improved corrosion resistance and reduced life-cycle costs. The new steam generators will also allow greater plant design flexibility and decreased construction costs due to smaller size, spatial orientation, and improved heat transfer efficiency which reduces coolant flow requirements. A new concept steam generator will alleviate the corrosion concerns encountered in existing designs of steam generators, while reducing component size and weight and providing greater flexibility in overall arrangement.



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